I have a feeling I might have named a blog post this before (?)…hmmm. Anyway, over the sunny Easter weekend, a number of things happened that made me really realise my world, and my friends worlds, are changing a lot faster than they used to and for so many different reasons. As the days, months and years go on, dynamics and situations evolve and develop without you taking note. Just when you think one thing is going to happen, something else happens instead…things which change everything. It’s funny how life just “happens”, and so quickly. I often question how I’m in my late twenties already, and what I’ve achieved and still want out of life…but everyone does that right? No matter how old. It all stemmed from the continuing censorship of the dramas surrounding contemporary artist Ai Weiwei, and from a long conversation with a new consultant and specialist, supposedly “the man” about my health condition. These two things made me question trust and faith in mankind, in systems and structures…about their ability to believe, help, support and guide people in this world. The Ai Weiwei petition website change.org was hacked this week, supposedly by the Chinese. I have a world of frustration inside about this situation as really there is nothing we can do but WAIT and hope for the best. I also have frustration with the UK’s NHS (who doesn’t!) but I’ve realised that through dealing with health problems and conditions whether they are your own or others close to you definitely gives you a different understanding and grasp on life…an added emotional instinct. This sense of questioning change has also stemmed from spending a few days with my parents and brothers in an attempt to escape work-based PhD reality (it gets a bit much sometimes), and the fact two of my closest friends, one of which is artist Georgina Vinsun, have had their first child…a baby boy with a beautifully and perfectly chiseled nose and chin. I cried so much the morning I found out about the little man as I was so proud of them, so proud of Georgie’s strength through it all. They are going to be amazing parents and I still can’t get my head around the fact they’ve created new life…a new soul that will no doubt be surrounded by creativity and more importantly love, support and understanding. So Easter has turned me into a contemplative, pre-occupied over-thinker sometimes crazied with emotionality whilst feeling occasionally a little bit goo-ey inside…but the sunshine does that too. I think I prefer Easter to Christmas sometimes, but again maybe that’s because of the weather! Or is it out of hope and spirit? As a fellow tweeter Andrew Seto said “Easter with family is like Christmas without turkey or scarves”…very true.
Yesterday, I came across a video that is helping me to negotiate this land of “change”…I simply LOVE this TED talk by “wrongologist” Kathryn Schulz who makes a compelling case for not just admitting but embracing our fallibility…the possibilities of being wrong and how we deal with misunderstandings and misinterpretations. How do we step outside of this feeling of being right? If we can, “we must open the door to so much freedom and creativity…open the door to discovery and wonder”. How does it feel emotionally to be wrong? This film is actually quite revelatory…she calls it “error blindness”, that we don’t realise that we’re wrong until it’s too late. We believe that getting something wrong means there’s something wrong with us…and that’s TRUE! So so true. I definitely feel that way and very often. She blames how we are educated as well as cultural influences and strikes a lot of similiar themes with Sir Ken Robinson, one of my favourite speakers.
“Our internal sense of rightness inside of us is not a reliable guide to the world.” – Kathryn Schulz
In relation to PhD land, this very short video from the Big Think by Noam Chomsky questions the development of language and it’s great mysteries. In turn, it made me question how and why we communicate in all the different ways we do…and how important it is to keep languages “alive”…or in my case writing and sending post.
People love getting post. I sent all my friends and family Easter cards this year…I think it’s the second time I’ve done it and I’ll continue year-on-year. This is certainly a great trait I have picked up from my mother. So today, and this week, I’ll somehow try and embrace being wrong, thinking I’m wrong but not in a negative sense. I’m not sure if i’ll get there…but planting that seed of thought is the beginning…much like what Easter stands for…